Tuesday, November 18, 2008

History Repeating

Mr. Alexander, back in the day.

I promised myself that I wouldn't get all political on this blog, but you know what they say about best laid plans, right?

Anyway - I was out to lunch with my uncle yesterday at Denningers in downtown Hamilton and we bumped into a gentleman by the name of Lincoln Alexander. Mr. Alexander is well known around these parts, as he was the first Black Lieutennant Governor of Ontario between 1985 and 1991. He's had schools and roads named after him and all that. Mr. C knows him because they've worked together in the past, so we were invited to sit down and shoot the breeze with him for a while. Turns out that he is fascinated with the English and had me say "Good afternoon, sir" to pretty much every well wisher who stopped to say "hi".

Linc - as he is known to those close to him - knew all about Coronation Street (definitely more so than me) and has met the Queen (she is "nice", apparently).

It was kinda cool to reason with a dude who has seen and experienced so much. In a way he was the Barack Obama of his time. No other black man had ever been granted the power and responsibility that he was given at the time. Linc must have knocked it out of the park because you don't get your own expressway for nothing.

When asked what he thought of the new American President-Elect, Mr. Alexander had only this to say: "I think he's a beacon of hope for the future of the world". Lofty praise, indeed....

On a completely different note, the next few days should provide me with a plethora of material for this digital tome. My family is heading out to Costa Rica for my cousin Adjoah's wedding. I'm staying in Hamilton with the dog and the cat. Now, having never had pets as a kid I was never really that fussed about them. I was also allergic. My sister had two hamsters when we were growing up. She was too scared to handle them though so all they ever did was sit in the cage and occasionally get a run round in a hamster ball. One died rather suddenly, while the other, bereft of hamster companionship, went bald and mad and then died a couple of months later. My dad buried it in the verge by the driveway, wrapped in newspaper, with some seeds to nibble on as it made the journey to the next echelon. I just had this really weird thought that if I make it to heaven, that these hamsters whose names I don't remember will be waiting there for me and the whole scene will be like that awkward moment at a high school reunion where you meet someone who you used to see everyday in Maths, but you can't remember their name, which is embarassing, because they always let you borrow their protractor...

This complete lack of empathy with other lifeforms contined the first time I went to university, where my girl and I were asked to look after our housemate's guinea pig. We fed it on the first day and went back to find the cage empty on the second. Obviously we panicked until we found the little bastard hiding, unharmed in the bottom of her chest of drawers. Since then I have vowed never to take stewardship of someone else's pets - until now. The dog - I'm cool with. You always now what's up with Blue. If she's whining she generally wants to go outside and pee or something, or she's hungry. That's easy enough. The cat, however is a different story. Lucky - short for Lucifer (Not really true - I made that up) - has issues. I have been slapped in the face by this cat at least twice, and while she has grown out of fighting her reflection in the oven door as she was prone to do last year, there is still a deeply insane streak entrenched in that tiny, furry body. I haven't seen her so far yet today, but heard her wandering the halls earlier trying to yack up a furball. I have learned her Kryptonite though. Lucky is scared shitless of the vacuum cleaner.

At any rate, I'll let yous guys know what happens. If I kill the cat and stash the body - we were out at a bar together all night, and you didn't see nothing, right?

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